Future airline concepts reimagines single-aisle business class: report – Business Insider

The future of consumer flight could include a more luxurious business-class experience in narrow-body airplanes, equipped with a bed, extra luggage space, and a minibar.
Crystal Cabin Awards, an international award that highlights innovative interior aircraft designs, announced its 2023 shortlist of winners on Monday.
This year’s list reflects an interest in creating a more “attractive, sustainable, and comfortable” passenger experience, according to a news release from the awards organization.
A spokesperson for Crystal Cabin Awards did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Some of the designs appear to bet on a rebounding interest in business travel — an area that took a huge hit during the pandemic and may take years to recover.
Adient Aerospace, in collaboration with Boeing EnCore Interiors, hopes to bring the “wide-body experience to a narrow-body cabin” with its “Front-Row Business Class Retreat” concept, the company’s director of sales and marketing, Stephanie Faulk, told CNN Travel.
The design goes beyond the typical offerings of business class, such as extra legroom and more comfortable seats.
According to CNN Travel, Adient and Boeing envision lie-flat beds, extra storage for luggage, a minibar, a library, and even space for another passenger.
“As the capabilities of narrow-body airplanes grow, they are taking on long-haul missions — flying increasingly further,” Faulk told CNN Travel. “The result is an inherent desire for increased comfort and features equivalent to wide-body airplanes.”
A spokesperson for Adient did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Companies like ACCESS are also thinking about redesigning the business-class seat as some airlines opt for narrowbody planes, which are more fuel-efficient.
Taller De Arquitectura T36, a Spanish design company, was also shortlisted for the Crystal Cabin Awards. The company’s concept aims to redesign airplane cabins entirely by getting rid of middle seats while also increasing the total number of seats, CNN Travel reported.
The cabin would come with real and virtual windows, according to the report. However, the design may make the locations of emergency exits less clear, CNN Travel reported.
Air New Zealand is taking economy flyers into consideration with its “Skynest” concept which was first introduced in 2020.
Insider was previously invited to experience Air New Zealand’s “Skynest,” which comes with a six-bed sleeping pod, along with a privacy curtain, USB ports, bed linens, storage. There are no TV screens, however.
“We wanted to offer our Economy customers a lie-flat option and that’s how Skynest was born,” Air New Zealand said in a press release. “It’s going to be a real game changer for the economy travel experience.”
According to Crystal Cabin Award, the airline’s design offers long-haul economy flyers with a “real, flat bed.”
“Installed in sleep islands in the middle section of the aircraft, Skynest bunk beds can be booked for time slots, enabling a restive nap above the clouds for those on lower fares,” the awards organization wrote.
Winners of the Crystal Cabin Award will be announced June 6.
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